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49ers make Penn State CB Tariq Castro-Fields a 6th-round draft pick

Apr 30, 2022 at 2:26 PM


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The San Francisco 49ers selected Penn State cornerback Tariq Castro-Fields with the 43rd pick (No. 221 overall) in the sixth round of the 2022 NFL Draft. The 49ers were awarded this selection as a compensatory pick due to more offseason losses than additions in 2021. Castro-Fields formally met with the 49ers at the NFL Scouting Combine.

Castro-Fields registered 33 tackles and six passes defensed through 12 game appearances as a senior in 2021, per Sports Reference. He recorded 139 tackles, 10 tackles for a loss, a sack, 25 passes defensed, three interceptions, and a forced fumble through his five collegiate seasons.

Castro-Fields is from Upper Marlboro, MD. He earned a pre-draft grade of 5.97 from NFL.com, which equates to an "average backup or special-teams player," per the site's 8-point grading scale.

At the NFL Scouting Combine, the 6' 0 5/8" and 197-pound Castro-Fields had a 40-time of 4.38 seconds. His other measurables include an arm length of 30 3/4 inches and hands measuring 8 3/4 inches.

Castro-Fields had a vertical jump of 37 inches, a broad jump of 131 inches, 14 reps in the bench press, a 7.05-second three-cone drill time, and a 20-yard shuttle time of 4.06 seconds at his personal Pro Day. At his school Pro Day, he had a 40-time of 4.71 seconds, a vertical jump of 33.50 inches, and a 20-yard shuttle time of 4.19 seconds.

NFL.com projected Castro-Fields to be a fourth-round draft pick.

Below is the NFL.com draft profile bio on Castro-Fields:

Castro-Fields was a first-team all-state and Washington, D.C. All-Metro pick at Riverdale Baptist High School in Maryland before arriving at State College. He played in 12 games as a reserve his true freshman year (10 tackles, two for loss, one interception, three pass breakups) and earned two starts as a sophomore (32 tackles, five for loss, seven pass breakups in 13 appearances). Big Ten coaches voted him honorable mention all-conference for his play in 12 starts as a junior, when he tied for the team lead with eight pass breakups in addition to recording 52 tackles, three for loss and two interceptions. Castro-Fields was an honorable mention selection again in 2020 despite missing all but three games with an injury (12 tackles, one pass breakup) and earned the honor a third time in 2021 (32 tackles, six pass breakups in 12 starts). He opted out of the team's 2021 bowl game to prepare for the NFL draft. -- by Chad Reuter

Lance Zierlein of NFL.com, who compares Castro-Fields to Josh Shaw, wrote the following within his scouting report:

Perimeter cornerback with appealing size and traits for press-man, but confidence and consistency were missing from his 2021 tape. Castro-Fields' length, strength and athleticism are likely to be viewed as moldable features by defensive back coaches. However, he is missing the desired stickiness to the route and lacks spatial awareness and ball-hawking instincts from zone. His run support commitment is a bit disappointing relative to his size. Castro-Fields possesses the tools and versatility to operate as a backup in a variety of coverage schemes and is a middle-round value with upside traits.

Kyle Crabbs of The Draft Network wrote the following about Castro-Fields within his scouting report:

Penn State cornerback Tariq Castro-Fields is a long-time member of the Nittany Lions' defensive backfield and projects as someone who will serve as a bottom of the roster cornerback at the pro level. Casto-Fields has great size for the position and should be able to command a special teams role to help him remain on a 53-man roster, but I didn't necessarily see the instincts and dynamic play in space to believe he is going to command a prominent role in the NFL. Castro-Fields hasn't been able to generate a lot of impact plays throughout the course of five years of game action and has not logged an interception since 2019. He appears, to me, to be a baseline functional NFL athlete and if he's able and willing to embrace the peripheral roles a defensive back can undertake, he can create himself a role. It is worth mentioning that Castro-Fields was an accomplished track athlete in HS and held the fastest 4x400 time in the state of Maryland during his junior year of high school. But that was many years and several pounds ago; Castro-Fields was originally listed on his 247 Sports recruiting profile at 173 pounds versus the 198 he's currently listed at.

Measurables


Height: 6' 0 5/8"
Weight: 197 lbs.
Arm length: 30 3/4 inches
Hand length: 8 3/4 inches

NFL Scouting Combine


40-time: 4.38 seconds

College Statistics
Year School Class G Solo Ast Tot Loss Sk Int
2017 Penn State FR 7 9 1 10 2 0 1
2018 Penn State SO 12 21 11 32 5 1 --
2019 Penn State JR 12 32 20 52 3 0 2
2020 Penn State SR 3 6 6 12 0 0 --
2021 Penn State SR 12 26 7 33 0 0 --
Total Penn State 94 45 139 10 1 3


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